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Help understand the best option for flying around Europe - LSA or UL

172driver wrote:

Frankly, I think you grossly exaggerate. I have crossed Europe several times VFR in the era of paper charts and later Jurassic handheld GPS (Garmin 96, anyone?) and never had a problem. Yes, it is more planning work than in the US and yes, there are local quirks, but it’s perfectly doable.

I think what johnh is experiencing is simply culture shock. VFR in the US is quite different and definitely easier from a planning perspective. But a lot of these kinds of things boil down to just taking the time to try something new and getting used to it. In the beginning I really did spend a huge amount of time on planning, simply because it was all so unfamiliar. Now I can plan a flight (VFR or IFR) in about the same amount of time I spent in the US, because I’m familiar with what needs to be done.

Regarding the PTF LSA thing, why did it change?

EHRD, Netherlands

Steve6443 wrote:

If you were to buy (eg) a German registered LSA (D-Exxx), you could still keep it on (e.g.) the German register, even if you live in France…or transfer it to the French register.

Are you able to operate such a plane (German registered) with a French LAPL license? You can’t with a UL registered.

Portugal

Wingover wrote:

Are you able to operate such a plane (German registered) with a French LAPL license? You can’t with a UL registered.

Yes, because CS-LSA aircraft are EASA aircraft, while UL are Annex I aircraft.

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

172driver wrote:

johnh wrote: As I’ve written elsewhere, I came to the conclusion that “flying to go somewhere” in Europe is next to impossible.

Frankly, I think you grossly exaggerate.

It hugely depends what one wants to do. I am totally disinterested in 500$ burger runs or “flying for flying’s sake”, my flying always has to have to purpose of going somewhere or have another purpose, otherwise I don’t go.

And it hugely depends where you are based at. Spain and Portugal, while I don’t know their rules and pitfalls for LSA flying, weatherwise they are a totally different story as central Europe which again is a different story to Scandinavia or the UK. You certainly can go places there VFR much more often, the question however is, which places are available to go to.

I am based in Central Switzerland which means “going places” with any sort of reliability VFR means to stay north of the Alps or to go around them. My main route to Salzburg or to meetings in the West of Switzerland are also “going places” and feasible maybe at 70-80% of the time VFR on any given day, however trying to cross the Alps is a story which works maybe at 30% of any given day. The same goes for other mountain chains such as the Pyrenees. So as long as you are not trying to cross either the Alps or Pyrenees, flying VFR in Europe is not impossible, but challenging for many reasons discussed here. Most of them come down to bureaucratic red tape and active attempts by some CAA’s and airports to destroy any form of GA on their particular turfs. So to “go places” you need to be well aware, that many places don’t really want you up to the point where they actively fight you coming there.

However, flying only intra EU and Intra Schengen, there are still hundreds of airfields which do not require any sort of hassle to go there. I think for most of flying in Europe that is the main issue. As long as you don’t need to cross the Schengen border or need customs, flying is pretty straightforward. Clearly, some countries with their unbreakable desire to create restricted airspaces which never get activated but are there anyway, you need to get a feel of what is going on and how to get around it.

The OP appears to be based in Portugal, so “going places” VFR means Spain and France. I am not at all sure how LSA’s or let alone UL’s can e.g. fly to Morrocco, which for me would be a very interesting thing to do if I was in Portugal. Also flying to the portugese islands (Madeira, Azores) usually won’t work well in an LSA due to range.

LSZH, Switzerland

172driver wrote:

Frankly, I think you grossly exaggerate.

I think one should be aware of a down side of the internet. Some years ago my wife got MS . It’s a nasty disease, no known cause, no known good treatment. Health care in Norway is good, and she is followed up constantly with tests and medications. What she was told was to focus on living her life as best as she could, and always come to them for questions. Do not look on the internet for answers. It’s not that the answers aren’t there, but rather they are lost in tons of negative nonsense. This will only make you worry needlessly, make you scared and passive, and make you lose focus on the one important thing to focus on.

EuroGA is not a bad place, but it IS (part of) the internet. What doesn’t work for one person, may work just fine for you. There is only one way to find out, and that is to do it. In essence focus on flying and having fun. Almost none of the stuff I and others do would be possible in Europe according to “the internet”. Except perhaps in Alaska Two teenagers just flew around the world in ULs. And Dan here made the most incredible trip with his RV this summer.

ENVA ENOP ENMO, Norway

Mooney_Driver wrote:

The OP appears to be based in Portugal, so “going places” VFR means Spain and France. I am not at all sure how LSA’s or let alone UL’s can e.g. fly to Morrocco, which for me would be a very interesting thing to do if I was in Portugal. Also flying to the portugese islands (Madeira, Azores) usually won’t work well in an LSA due to range.

Thank you for the write up. It does make sense. My goal is to try in the summers to get to Greece or Sardinia for swimming for a couple of weeks and I see videos on youtube on UK (and EU) LSAs or ULs doing it. The rest of the time it is as you said, Portugal, Spain and France (possibly Morocco as a few clubs from here go there)

I agree that I don’t like the flying just for the sake of flying.

Portugal

@lesving

One of the best things I’ve read on here and beyond. Takk

always learning
LO__, Austria

Snoopy wrote:

One of the best things I’ve read on here and beyond. Takk

I second that!

Portugal

EuroGA is not a bad place, but it IS (part of) the internet. What doesn’t work for one person, may work just fine for you. There is only one way to find out, and that is to do it. In essence focus on flying and having fun. Almost none of the stuff I and others do would be possible in Europe according to “the internet”. Except perhaps in Alaska Two teenagers just flew around the world in ULs. And Dan here made the most incredible trip with his RV this summer.

That is a sweeping statement, however.

Two teenagers flew around the world with truly massive logistical and planning support, surrounded (and presumably funded) by a media frenzy. Any experienced pilot could have done those trips, but the fun to hassle ratio would have been way too poor for most to bother.

Dan did an amazing trip but he is pretty experienced and knows how to do this stuff.

A lot of flying, especially in Europe, and especially crossing borders, carries a lot of hassle, and learning how to avoid the hassle greatly improves the fun to hassle ratio. So documenting hassle and how to avoid it helps a lot of people enjoy flying.

A recurring theme on EuroGA is international privileges of ultralight and amateur built aircraft. Everything seems to be possible in Norway but this cannot be extrapolated. The debate is fuelled by poor publication of various national regulations on this stuff – this I believe is deliberate because most of it cannot be enforced.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

If one needs to be sure to have followed every rule in every book to the highest standard then it is allmost impossible to do it (not just flying, but anything in life).

If one prepares the important things diligently and just accepts the reality of maybe just making a little “mistake” and needing to talk/argue about it later and to hold ones ground in an argument it gets way easier to achieve goals.

More and more people in our society only have one goal left in life and make a sport out of it by trying to enforce their view on others by policing/educating everyone to the same standard:
“this shouldn’t have been possible because in regulation XXX/yyy subsection ZZZ is stated that you should have been shot upon arrival for doing your flight/business/etc”.

We only have to look in this forum: there is virtually no area where people don’t try to point out little things about regulations that should have prevented certain wonderful adventures and making them a little worse because of it.
Before Peter did some rearranging of posts even Dans most wonderful trip report got sullied. But this is not an aviation problem – it is a problem of our society: never make a mistake and if someone else makes one you should point it out on the spot and prevent them from doing things you wouldn’t do due to fear of failure to comply with every regulation on this planet and their most strict interpretation.

Sorry, but this is not my world anymore. Do what makes you happy and let everyone else just live their lifes!
Sadly misery loves company.

Last Edited by ASW22 at 23 Sep 03:02
Austria
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